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Main Text: Philippians 4:10-13

Main Point: Finding strength in Christ brings joy and contentment in the lives of believers through any and every circumstance of life.

I) Paul’s Joy in the Philippians Concern for him.

Verse 10: “I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity.”

“He now declares the gratitude of his mind towards the Philippians, that they may not regret their beneficence, as is usually the case when we think that our services are despised, or are reckoned of no account. They had sent him by Epaphroditus supplies for the relief of his necessity; he declares that their present had been acceptable to him, and he says, that he rejoiced that they had plucked up new vigor so as to exercise care respecting him. The metaphor is borrowed from trees, the strength of which is drawn inward, and lies concealed during winter, and begins to flourish in spring. But immediately afterwards subjoining a correction, he qualifies what he had said, that he may not seem to reprove their negligence in the past. He says, therefore, that they had formerly, too, been concerned respecting him, but that the circumstances of the times had not admitted of his being sooner relieved by their benignity. Thus he throws the blame upon the want of opportunity.” John Calvin

II) Paul’s Contentment in every season of life.

Verses 11-12: “[11] Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. [12] I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.”

“You will see at once from reading the text, upon the very surface, that contentment in all states is not a natural propensity of man. Ill weeds grow apace, covetousness, discontent, and murmuring, are as natural to man as thorns are to the soil. You have no need to sow thistles and brambles, they come up naturally enough, because they are indigenous to earth, upon which rests the curse, so you have no need to teach men to complain, they complain fast enough without any education. C.H. Spurgeon

“Some plants die if they are too much exposed, it may be that you are planted in some sheltered part of the garden where you do not get as much sun as you would like, but you are put there as a plant of His own righteous planting, that you may bring forth fruit unto perfection. Remember this, had any other condition been better for you than the one in which you are, God would have put you there. You are put by Him in the most suitable place, and if you had had the picking of your lot half an hour afterwards, you would have come back and said, “Lord, choose for me, for I have not chosen the best, after all….Then be content, you cannot better your lot. Take up your cross, you could not have a better trial than you have got, it is the best for you, it sifts you the most, it will do you the most good, and prove the most effective means of making you perfect in every good word and work to the glory of God.” C.H. Spurgeon

“Yet a little while, the painful conflict will be over. Courage, comrades, courage—glittering robes for conquerors. Courage, my brother, courage, you may sooner become rich than you dream of, perhaps there is e’en now, but a step between you and your inheritance. You may go home, peradventure, shivering in the cold March wind, but ere morning dawns you may be in your Master’s bosom. Bear up with your lot then, bear up with it. Let not the child of a king, who has an estate beyond the stars, murmur as others. You are not so poor after all, as they are who have no hope, though you seem poor, you are rich. Do not let your poor neighbors see you disconsolate, but let them see in you that holy calmness, that sweet resignation, that gracious submission, which makes the poor man more glorious than he that wears a coronet, and lifts the son of the soil up from his rustic habitation, and sets him among the princes of the blood-royal of heaven. Be happy, brethren, be satisfied and content. God will have you to learn, in whatever state you may be, therewith to be content.” C.H. Spurgeon

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